Hardware

Mass production of chips with ReRAM memory will soon start in the USA

Potential competitor to Intel 3D XPoint memory and NAND flash memory killer is on the horizon again. This is ReRAM memory performed by the Israeli company Weebit Nano. Weebit’s attempts to enter the market from South Korea and China have not been crowned with visible success, and now the entry is indicated from the United States. The American company SkyWater with close ties to the US military-industrial complex should be engaged in the production of products with ReRAM on board.

Image source: Weebit Nano

Image source: Weebit Nano

The Weebit Nano Resistive Memory (ReRAM) stores states in terms of the resistance of the working layer of the cell. It is a reversible and non-volatile state. In the process of reducing the resistance, oxygen ions are introduced into the layer, which form conductive threads in it from one electrode to another. The more threads and the thicker they are, the lower the resistance and vice versa. Writing such a cell is faster than writing a NAND cell and does not require pre-erasing, which significantly speeds up memory and reduces energy costs.

Weebit has promised to begin mass production of ReRAM memory by the end of 2020 in partnership with an unnamed South Korean manufacturer and has entered into an agreement with the Chinese to release products with ReRAM. Apparently, it did not work out with either the first or the second. The new agreement involves cooperation with the young company SkyWater from the United States. However, SkyWater came from the notorious American company Cypress Semiconductor. SkyWater was spun off from Cypress in 2017 and acquired a small plant from the former Minnesota-based Control Data Corporation, which Cypress acquired in 1991.

Image source: Weebit Nano

Image source: Weebit Nano

SkyWater has distinguished itself with projects funded by DARPA and other US military departments. Working with Weebit also fits into this scheme. Weebit memory chips are resistant to radiation and high operating temperatures, which interests the military. ReRAM will be released in the form of SkyWater memory blocks embedded in chips using a 130nm process technology, which is very good for a factory from the 80s. But for the “killer” NAND, this is clearly not enough, but you have to start somewhere.

About the author

Dylan Harris

Dylan Harris is fascinated by tests and reviews of computer hardware.

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